The players are reporting to camp right now, and training camp practices for the Seattle Seahawks begin tomorrow morning. This sounds like the perfect time for the staff here at 12th Man Rising to unveil a new feature.
We call this the Seahawks Roundtable. Each week the entire staff will respond to a single open-ended question. It should be interesting.
This week’s question: Which position’s roster battle will you be watching most closely in training camp this year?
For me there’s no question: it’s the offensive line.
First, I think the success of that unit will determine how far this team can go, and there are some intriguing story lines all along that front; Can Russell Okung have a healthy, productive season and solidify himself as a player the Seahawks need to extend and continue forward with?
Likewise, in the last year of his deal will J.R. Sweezy take that next big step and become a Pro Bowler? How does Justin Britt fare at RT in his second season in the league after a strong finish to his rookie campaign? And most importantly, I’ve got my eye on the battles at C and LG.
As we sit here today it’s most likely Patrick Lewis at C and Alvin Bailey at LG, but that could change and at some point I expect it will. Can Terry Poole beat out Bailey at guard? Will Mark Glowinski look good enough in camp to allow the team to possibly move on from Sweezy when he hits free agency? How quickly will Kristjan Sokoli develop as a DL-to-C convert?
The answers to these questions are crucial, and I’m fascinated to watch how it’s going to go.
While I’m tempted to say offensive line, I think RW and Marshawn have proven they can get by with a below average group there, so I’m going to say the wide receivers.
I want to see if Tyler Lockett lives up to the hype. I want to see if Chris Matthews continues where he left off in the Super Bowl. I want to see if Kearse and his $2.3 million cap hit are expendable. Will a Kevin Norwood, Doug McNeil, or Kasen Williams push him out? I want to see how healthy Paul Richardson is.
I think this group has a lot of potential but I have no idea how it will play out. I can’t wait to find out.
Jan 25, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Team Irvin tight end Jimmy Graham of the New Orleans Saints (80) catches a touchdown pass in front of Team Carter safety Donte Whitner of the Cleveland Browns (31) in the 2015 Pro Bowl at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Without question, wide receiver will be very closely watched. With the addition of Jimmy Graham and Tyler Lockett, we will need to watch to see how the rest of the WRs shake out.
Yes I know Graham is listed as a tight end, but truly we all know better. His presence will greatly effect how the rest of that position ends up being dealt with. I expect Doug Baldwin to still be listed as the #1 WR, but I think Jermaine Kearse could be on the bubble if Chris Matthews has a strong camp.
Also I’ll be watching Michael Bennett vs Frank Clark. With Bennett’s threats to hold out and skip camp, it could be the perfect opportunity for Clark to shine in camp. Bennett’s demands and threats may be doing him a disservice.
If Clark performs well, it makes Bennett less valuable. However I expect fans and the coaches will see how important Bennett is to this team and will figure out a way to make him happy.
Next: Page 2: with 5 more responses